June 25, 2017

Worcester Sun, June 25-July 1: Mariano on District 5 council candidates, clinical trial pioneers, music therapy, pot shots + much more

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Doug Arbetter, Paul Franco and Matt Wally are three of the four candidates vying for the District 5 City Council seat being vacated by Gary Rosen, who is running for an at-large post.

Sun columnist

Mariano: Which City Council candidate in District 5 has the advantage?

Ray Mariano

“As for the candidates, this is an impressive group. Although it is way too early to make a final decision as to who might best serve the district, here is an initial look at three of the four candidates’ strengths and weaknesses.”

Sun Shine

Songs in the key of healing: Worcester Center for Expressive Therapies offers hope |  Older patients who had suffered from a stroke had lost the ability to speak, but would still be able to sing. Patients who have been unable to walk have found their stride with the assistance of the center’s music therapy. These stories aren’t as improbable as they seem. “Music activates both sides of the brain,” said Kayla Daly, owner/director. “Music can re-create new neural connections in the brain.”

Art Simas / For Worcester Sun

Dr. Charles Birbara and Mary Coughlin

Meet Worcester’s clinical trial pioneers |  Dr. Charles A. Birbara and Mary Coughlin, R.N., welcome patients in pain, exploring frontiers of molecular medicine. Their office often serves as a last resort for relief for those without insurance and a ray of hope for others who have exhausted conventional therapies. “If we can relieve pain differently, and get people away from opioids by understanding how other pain pathways can be impeded, that would make a huge difference in people’s lives,” Dr. Birbara said.

Sun Serial

Giselle Rivera-Flores / For Worcester Sun

A new space for The Learning Hub.

A Mother’s Journey [Part 47]: The new home frame of mind |  “While we strive to keep our programming free to students through our library initiatives, we need a source of increased revenue to allow our program to grow and eventually reign as the number one after-school program in the area. To accomplish that, we need to enhance our reachability.” As of July 12, The Learning Hub will partner with one of the city’s oldest and most revered businesses. Find out what Giselle and the Hub are up to now.

Sun columnist

Flickr / Grudnick

The Slants, performing in April.

Sina-cism: The right slant on the First Amendment |  “We should cheer this ruling, which reaffirms that we Americans are stuck with freedom. Civility, good taste and tolerance will have to see us through. We will have to talk to one another. Ultimately, neither courts nor politics can save us from ourselves.”

Editorial: Horses on the force |  Worcester hasn’t had mounted police since the 1940s. Now — in a development that a year ago was barely on the public’s radar — they’re back. We’re all for trotting out new ideas, but will this prove to be a good one once the novelty wears off? We’re guessing yes.

Sun Spots with Hitch [Vol. 174]: A blunt assessment |  As it turns out, regulating marijuana is no piece of cake. Did somebody say, cake? Man, I could go for some cake right about now. Frosting’s the best! Wait, what? Oh right … While State House leaders seemed to put out the fire after bungling their first pass at a legal pot law, voters are still feeling the burn from a proposed tax that could go as high as 28 percent. With deliberations set to continue this week, Hitch is hungry for some real answers.

Sam Doran / State House News Service

Marijuana activists, some of them sharing a few joints, gathered in front of the State House Wednesday, June 21, to protest the House marijuana bill scheduled for discussion that day. The Senate debated its own pot bill on Thursday, and conferees to work out a compromise bill were appointed Friday.

On Beacon Hill: ‘Ambassadors of cannabis’ unite — kind of |  The Legislature did what it has refused to do for years last week — talk in public about the leafy green intoxicant — but only because voters forced Beacon Hill’s hand. The sudden zeal to alter the voter-approved law drew the ire of activists who flocked outside the State House to rail against legislative tweaking. Plus, McGovern, Markey, Kane, cellphone oppression and the other Warren.

Worcester Weekly: Fireworks at East Park, new WAM exhibit + more, June 25-July 1 |  The most fun you’ll have with a calendar of events all week. And you just might learn something, too. Here are some of the best things to do, places to go — and reasons why — over the next few days.

Sun Staff

The new 118-room hotel at Washington Square is open.

Inbox [June 25-July 1]: News and notes from Homewood Suites, Dept. of Public Works, Advocates, WRTA and Sen. Moore |  Have news you or your group would like to share? Let us know by emailing it to info@worcester.ma. Be sure to include a link to the full release on your site or Facebook page so we can include it and send Sun members your way.

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